AG Rokita defends state-funded trip to US southern border

INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita defends a recent state-funded trip to the US southern border.

According to Rokita’s office, the late January trip was his second to the southern border in three months. He met with Texas Governor Greg Abbott, law enforcement officers and other attorney generals.

“This border issue, this failure to enforce our sovereign rights as a country is not just a problem for border states,” Rokita said in an interview on Tuesday. “It’s a problem for all states.”

Rokita said the purpose of the trip is to investigate the impact of illegal immigration on Indiana, especially when it comes to issues like human trafficking and the drug epidemic.

“We’re discovering more and more evidence showing that they have fentanyl with them that can kill anyone in this state tenfold,” Rokita said.

Rokita confirmed that the recent trip was paid for with state resources. In a tweet Posted Friday afternoon, he said that “no taxpayer money was improperly spent on my trip to gather evidence.”

Rokita pointed out that he was driving to and from Texas.

When asked if he believed the trip was an appropriate use of taxpayers’ money, Rokita replied, “Absolutely. I’m the chief law enforcement officer and legal officer here in the state of Indiana. Absolutely. If the federal government isn’t doing its job, I think the states should do their job.”

During the trip, Rokita announced a multi-state lawsuit against the Biden administration to try to end a federal program that brings children from some Central American countries to the US.

Meanwhile, the Indiana Democratic Party is calling on Rokita to reimburse the state for his trip to the border.

“Hoosier taxpayers should not foot the bill for his selfish political agenda,” said Drew Anderson, communications director.

Anderson said he believes the AG has “misused its office,” arguing that such travel should be left to federal officials, not state leaders.

“For this kind of travel, it would have to be an elected congressional official who, in my opinion, has the jurisdiction to make those trips,” Anderson said.

On his way back from Indiana, Rokita attended a meeting of former President Donald Trump in Texas.

According to a spokesman for Rokita’s office, the border visit and demonstration were “not coordinated in advance”.

We filed a public registry request to find out exactly how much the trip cost the state. Our application is still pending.

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